Maurizio Bezzeccheri, Enel Américas’ CEO, spoke with La Tercera about Enel’s vision with regard to electric vehicles

Published on Monday, 28 January 2019

Maurizio Bezzeccheri, Enel Américas’ CEO, spoke with La Tercera about Enel’s vision with regard to electric vehicles

The day has arrived! Car fanatics are ready to witness the Formula E. Enel has played a key role in today’s event, which is taking place in Chile for the second time. For Enel Américas’ CEO, Maurizio Bezzecheri, the spectacle represents the most extreme application of electric vehicles, which are arriving to this country little-by-little, though they are still more expensive than gasoline-powered cars. He also said that our country had the best conditions for the Formula E race.

What is the importance of this event?

-The Formula E is part of Enel’s vision about the changes to come in the world of energy. It is clear that the world will change and there are three pillars.

What are they?

 -One is electrification, that is, the use of energy will be opened to new applications, such as electric vehicles. Increasingly, electric power will enter worlds where it didn’t used to be. The Formula E represents the most extreme application of an electric car.

The second element is decentralization, that is, the generation and storage of energy locally such as in a house. This radically changes the previous concept that there has to be a large generation, transmission, and distribution plant.

Now the customers are part of the game, since they not only consume energy but they also generate it. The third pillar that changes the world is digitalization, such as the smart meter.

Large cities have a pollution and noise problem, and we can provide an answer: electric transportation that is based on the logic of the three pillars.

 So how are you preparing for electric transport?   

-In Latin America private cars have a much slower penetration. But Chile is avant-garde not only in the region, but in the world as regards public transport.

The 102 electric buses is an example of this. We distribute energy in the large cities of the region, therefore we are where the client is. What we look at is the global infrastructure of a large city.

Are the regional countries prepared for the regulatory changes? 

Obviously, there is a need for regulatory change. Once again Chile is a pioneer and a few months ago a decree was published that allows recognizing all the costs related to the digitalization of the networks in the tariffs. Therefore, smart meters are part of the tariffs. Chile is the only country that formally recognizes these costs. It's at the forefront. We are at a relevant moment for Chile. The COP25 will also be developed. Chile is changing its philosophy and everything is coming together in a kind of favorable situation.

Is Chile the leader then?

  -It is making progress. There is a very dynamic economy, and there is visibility in Latin America. That is why we are interested in being in Chile, because it has a situation with regulatory stability. There is growing consumption and we can apply solutions to the vanguard.  

Chile also has developed solutions at the forefront in public transport. There is no other example of massive application of electric buses in urban transit, except for China.

And are there plans for new plants in Chile?

-We are obviously looking at that. The issue of decarbonization will also raise issues of new sources of renewable energy. Moreover, the issue of power transmission must be fixed, it's a bit congested. This is because renewables are placed where there are more resources and not necessarily near where the energy is used.

With Enel X (electrical technologies and solutions) we will continue to grow if the opportunity is there. Electricity distribution is also an area where we would like to grow.